This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Vinyl Is a Music Choice: The Right One

PORTLAND, Ore. (TheStreet) -- Sometimes music fans just like to have their choices validated.

In a span of five days spent selling old Peter Lemongello and Ray Conniff records acquired as part of large auction lots and surfing a reggae-record site for '70s soul albums and '60s French girl-group compilations, I started to ask myself why I do this. We've reached a point where "owning" music is wholly unnecessary.

Whole Apple (AAPL - Get Report) iTunes libraries sit dormant, digital music and CD sales are slumping and streaming services not only grew 32% in 2013, but made up 16% of all recording revenue.

So why would anyone choose to not only purchase music, but pay a premium for it? Why would vinyl buyers increase that medium's sales by 31% last year to 6 million albums and 250% since 1993 as the rest of music saw sales plummet 50% post-Napster? As Gizmodo writer Mario Aguilar wrote earlier this month, vinyl listeners enjoy the medium more and are willing to buy into the experience.

Must Read: One Number to Question in Box's IPO

The people who actually care about the experience of ownership are increasingly turning back to vinyl because it gives you a physical experience that's more fulfilling than a simple CD purchase. There are a few reasons this might be the case, but it all boils down to experience: a warm and fuzzy happy feeling you get from buying and playing LPs that you just can't get from any other source.

There have been a few attempts to justify why this is happening. Die-hard vinyl collectors and fans argue that it's about sound quality, but CDs produce quality 7.5 times more full than terrible, compressed, "lossy" digital formats buyers are accustomed to. In many cases, modern records are transferring digital recordings to analog format and stifling the true analog sound buyers are seeking. Neil Young's PonoMusic, meanwhile, has taken in roughly $5 million through its Kickstarter campaign in an attempt to bring high-definition digital music files to the masses. So that takes quality out of the equation.

Convenience? There's just about nothing less convenient than a vinyl LP. They're bulky, they're fragile, there's the ever-present sound of subtle scratch on any record not kept in absolutely pristine condition. Oh, and you can't just download one to your smartphone or play it on any app-enabled device. However, just about every new album comes with either a CD copy, a little insert with a code for a digital download or, in the case of Amazon's (AMZN - Get Report) AutoRip, includes a digital copy automatically added to a cloud-based account or player.

Ultimately, it comes down to aesthetics and preference as the tiebreakers, and there's nothing wrong with either.

1 of 2

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
AAPL $94.19 -1.04%
AMZN $670.90 -0.06%
P $9.28 6.91%
FB $118.06 0.54%
GOOG $695.70 0.48%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,651.26 -99.65 -0.56%
S&P 500 2,051.12 -12.25 -0.59%
NASDAQ 4,725.6390 -37.5850 -0.79%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs